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Chalk Streams

Chalk streams are a characteristic and attractive feature of the Chilterns landscape. They are also a globally rare habitat, confined to north west Europe and to the UK in particular. In fact, of the 200 or so chalk streams in the world, over 160 are found in England.

Chalk streams are important habitats for wildlife and support a massive range of plants and animals.  They are home to some of our most threatened plants and animals, such as the water vole and brown trout. They also have a fascinating history and supported many thriving industries in the past.

The Chilterns' chalk streams are so important that a special partnership project has been created to conserve them. Uniting all the organisations with an interest in the streams, the Chilterns Chalk Streams Project works with local people across the Chilterns to improve river habitats, improve access and enjoyment and promote the sustainable use of water.

In this section you can see a map of chalk streams in the Chilterns, find out more about how they work and how they are being looked after and what you can do to enjoy and help care for our lovely streams. We've also put together a great gallery of images of local chalk streams and their wildlife.

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